Public notification and referrals

In this guide

Some lodged development applications require public notification as part of their assessment process.

When public notification is required

Public notification allows neighbours and other interested parties to be notified about a development that affects them, so that they have the opportunity to comment.

By formally supporting or opposing a development, South Australians can influence the decision-making on an application.

Notification types

Notification types for category of development
Assessment category Notification type
Code Assessed – Performance Assessed
  • adjoining land owners
  • notice onsite.

The Code can specify certain developments that don't require notification.

Impact Assessed - Code Restricted
  • adjoining land owners
  • any others affected
  • public notice
  • notice onsite.
Impact Assessed – Minister or Regulations
  • adjoining land owners
  • any others affected
  • public notice
  • notice on the subject site.

The Minister may also require additional consultation.

When referrals are required

If you wish to undertake development that requires approval under the Planning, Development and Infrastructure Act 2016, for large and complex developments, they may be referred to state, local or federal government agencies, such as the Environment Protection Authority, the Adelaide Airports Authority or SA Water to review certain elements of the proposed development.

Referrals are required when the proposed development may:

  • impact on or be affected by services or matters that other authorities have control over or an interest in
  • have a broader impact on the health and safety of the community and the environment.

Referrals are set out in the Regulations and may require the applicant to pay additional fees for the authority to send the application on for a referral. Referrals inform and in some cases, direct the assessment and outcome of the development application.

The organisation that the application is referred to will depend on the type of issue and it is possible for an application to be sent to more than one different organisation for referral.

Environment Protection Authority

Your application may be referred to the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) for assessment.

The EPA will examine how air quality, noise, radiation, site contamination, waste, wastewater and water quality are addressed in development applications that are referred to them.

State heritage areas

The Planning and Design Code contains State Heritage Areas that apply across South Australia.

Any proposal to undertake development within a State Heritage Area will be referred to the Heritage Minister, who will have greater authority to direct decision-making and can recommend that an application be refused, then application cannot progress.

Bushfire areas

The planning requirements in bushfire protection areas may include the application being referred to the Fire Service.

If you choose a risky house site on your land, CFS must assess the safety of your chosen location and provide advice. Siting your house in the safest location on your land will significantly speed up your assessment.

Pre-lodgement agreements

The Act allows applicants to meet with referral agencies to gain formal agreements before lodging their development application. Having a pre-lodgement agreement means that the assessment can proceed more quickly and efficiently.